Tom Graves: a work-history


Role keywords

These roles have all been undertaken regularly since 1976, and have often
been interleaved within a single task or contract.

//Other past/current activities include//

  • Research and writing on psychology of skills education and related areas (nine books published since 1976 in a total of ten languages; tenth book scheduled for publication in late 2000)
  • Illustration/photography for medical education: Medical Recording Service Foundation/National Foundation for Educational Research (UK)
  • Magazine articles on computing, psychology, aspects of archaeology, and other related areas
  • Musical performance (flute, bass-flute, clarinet, saxophone and oboe) and composition

Business analyst

  • Extensive experience in systems analysis and systems synthesis, translating business and operational requirements to system specifications and high-level design requirements, and identifying gaps in conceptual designs and operational procedures
  • Extensive past business experience as manager and director of own typesetting company (ten staff)
  • Current experience in developing procedures to ISO 9000 and other quality-system standards
  • Current experience in use of standard software methodologies (Yourdon/Mellor, Booch, Rumbaugh) and visual tools (UML, Visio, ABC Flowcharter)
  • Some experience with Primavera Project Planner (P3) and Microsoft Project

Information-management requirements for Aeronautical Engineering Support Facility integration (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 2000)
Analysis of procedure, storage, access and cross-reference requirements for management of inspections and information-sources (paper documents, electronic data and physical samples) for support-facility responsible for specialist investigations on all RAAF platforms and equipment; requirements included need for secure information storage for at least fifty years, support and quality-management for very wide range of inspection types, complexities and durations, and information-exchange with external agencies; analysis involved interviews with more than twenty individuals representing ten separate 'client'-groups and external agencies; end-result was report providing basis for full systems analysis and recommendations for implementation.
Reference: David Holmes (Senior Professional Officer 'B', AMRL): 03 9626 7708
User analysis for electronic commerce (Telstra Multimedia, 1997)
Identification of boundaries of roles and responsibilities between different classes of user of Internet-based electronic commerce system; acted as 'bridge' between business/marketing staff and technical/development staff; end-result was set of user-manuals for revised classes of user.
Reference: Liz Walsh Ryan (Business Manager, Telstra Multimedia): 03 9256 5789
Quality system for research laboratory (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1996-97)
Assisted quality consultant in development of ISO-9000 compliant quality system; acted as 'bridge' between production-oriented quality consultant and information-oriented research scientists; end-result was adaptation of ISO-9001 specification to client environment, with ongoing implementation.
References: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Graham Andrew (quality systems consultant - former Quality Manager, ASTA Engineering): 03 9877 2228
Direct typesetting for publishers (Wordsmiths [GB], 1978-1986)
Assessment and analysis of the production needs of a wide variety of publishers, each requiring a different balance of control of and responsibility for encoding of complex typesetting (including books, part-works, crossword puzzles and financial rate-tables); end-result was specification, design and implementation of adaptable general-purpose system for typesetting from standard microcomputer-based word-processors such as WordStar; eventually superseded by PostScript-based desktop-publishing systems.
Reference: Andrew Tribute (Principal Consultant, Seybold Limited): [+44] 1428 792 249.

Help-systems/on-line developer

  • Extensive experience with PHP, Allaire ColdFusion, Macromedia Dreamweaver, Macromedia FireWorks, Microsoft FrontPage and other web development tools, including HTML and Javascript programming for on-line databases
  • Extensive experience with HDK3 and IntraWeb for combined paper manuals and context-sensitive online help/intranet-based help
  • Current experience with Microsoft InterDev, Borland Intrabuilder and similar tools for intranet/internet-accessible databases
  • Current experience with Web browsers and CD-ROM development (intranet/project documentation)
  • Some exposure to FrameWork, Adobe Acrobat and similar tools

(See also the 'Technical writer' section)

Intranet web-site for research team (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1998-2000)
Developed system-architecture, ColdFusion templates and initial content of intranet for F-111 Test and Teardown (aircraft life-extension project); site supports reporting and tracking of inspections, defects, images, reference data, event information, database requirements and database management for twelve sub-groups, and acts as common entry point for access to all intranet-accessible databases used by the team; supports complex multi-way many-to-many associative data relationships and variant object datatypes within standard ODBC/SQL structures; currently in regular use.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Browsable CD-ROM of test database (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1998)
Developed raw HTML and ObjectPAL (Paradox) scripts to export strain-gauge reference data from aircraft structural-test database to intranet and CD-ROM; output included tables, images and index pages, with full cross-references generated from database many-to-many relationships; code embedded in database form to automate regular updates; data currently in regular use.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Samples: example CD-ROM in ISO-9660 format
Information infrastructure for research laboratory quality system Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1996-97)
Defined and implemented Word templates (including document-control macros), HDK templates and IntraWeb-based intranet site for ISO-9001 documentation; assisted users in preparing content to ISO-9001 requirements; system was designed to be maintained by scientists and engineers with minimal knowledge of Word or HTML programming; system fully installed and currently in use.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Samples: example procedures documents available in paper, Word 7.0 or HTML format; example templates for document control and HDK 'one-step conversion' available
Help system for structural test database (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1995)
Developed Word templates, HDK templates and all basic content for context-sensitive help system for Paradox databases; help system designed for routine 'one-step' conversion from paper manual to online system with all embedded context-sensitive links; system fully installed and currently in use.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Samples: example manual/help-system available in paper, Word 7.0 or Windows Help format

Technical writer

  • Familiar with terminology for computing, engineering, medical, emergency-services, print/publishing and general business environments
  • Extensive experience with Microsoft Word (most versions to Word 8 for Windows 95 and Word 6.0 for Macintosh), including WordBasic/VBA development
  • Current experience with other Microsoft Office software (Access, Excel, PowerPoint, Mail/Exchange/Outlook, FrontPage, Publisher)
  • Current experience with graphics packages such as Visio Professional (including database and software documentation tools), ABC FlowCharter and PaintShop Pro
  • Some exposure to Unix and MVS operating environments

(See also the 'Help-systems/online developer' section)

Specifications for emergency-services callout system (Intergraph Public Safety, 1997)
Preparation of interface specifications and software design documentation for callout system for New Zealand Fire Service and other emergency-services; task included assisting in some aspects of systems analysis and overall system design, and WordBasic/VBA development for automated requirements traceability.
Reference: Greg Fuller (Project Manager, Intergraph Public Safety): 03 9292 9600
Samples: examples of specifications available, in paper or Word 7.0 format
Manuals for electronic commerce system (Telstra Multimedia, 1997)
Preparation of user-manuals for pilot of Telstra 'SureLink' Internet commerce system, for five distinct audiences (buyer, merchant, web designer, server operator, customer-service staff); information partially derived from existing US documentation, but required significant localisation and re-analysis of existing audience definitions to match much-altered boundaries of responsibility and user-knowledge; information within suite of manuals ranged from basic user registration through to HTML programming and server configuration; manuals delivered as Word files pre-mapped for conversion to online documents, and organised for simple update for known software revisions scheduled at three-month intervals; manuals currently in use.
Reference: Liz Walsh Ryan (Business Manager, Telstra Multimedia): 03 9256 5789
Samples: examples of all manuals available, in paper or Word 7.0 format

Specifications for test-control system (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1992-94)
Preparation of specifications for high-speed real-time control-system for full-scale structural test of airframe; document identification and version-control methodology were developed from scratch for use in a scientific/engineering environment in which formal specifications had previously been uncommon and in which requirements changed rapidly with increasing scientific knowledge; task included high-level analysis of many aspects of the overall system, including controller user-interface, system logs and activity records, and system interfaces and data-flows.
Reference: Alan Patterson (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7655
Samples: examples of specifications available, in paper or Word 7.0 format

Skills educator/trainer

  • Extensive experience in use of written and verbal language styles for skills education (including nine books published so far, in a total of ten languages, with worldwide sales in excess of 250,000 copies)
  • Extensive experience in presenting within full range of educational environments, from one-on-one facilitation to large-scale lectures, and from written workbooks to weekend workshops
  • Extensive research on the development of observation, awareness and intuitive judgment
  • Current experience with Microsoft PowerPoint and similar presentation software
  • Past experience in recorded and live TV and radio programmes

Short courses for engineers on quality-system documentation and advanced Word (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1997)
Short courses as part of support for quality-system project; introduced participants to styles, templates and macros, leading to document version-control and document management.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630
Samples: PowerPoint presentation available

Customer education for direct typesetting (Wordsmiths [GB], 1980-86)
One-on-one education for most Wordsmith clients over a seven-year period, adapting general principles of direct typesetting (word-processor-based predecessor to desktop publishing), adapted for individual clients' needs and experience.
Reference: Angela Langdon, (formerly Daily Telegraph Publications) ([+1] 615 274 2595)

Segment for 'Making the Most of the Micro' (BBC Television, 1984)
Part of BBC TV's educational series on computing for general users; demonstrated direct typesetting from microcomputers and scanners, explaining the processes involved as an introduction to programming for text manipulation.
Reference: video available


  • Extensive database analysis, design and programming experience in Paradox for Windows (4 years full-time) and Microsoft Access, including some experience with Oracle and other SQL databases, with web-output and automated CD generation through PHP, ColdFusion, MS InterDev and other tools
  • Extensive experience in many common dialects of Basic such as Visual Basic, VBScript (including ASP) and VBA
  • Current experience in Delphi and Java object-oriented software development
  • Extensive past experience with integrated development environments for C programming, including Think C (Macintosh) and Turbo C (PC) (1 year full-time)
  • Extensive past experience with assembly language development environments (80x86, 680x0, 65xx, Z80, 8051 families) for embedded control and other applications (8 years full-time)
  • Some experience with C++ development environments

(See also the 'Online developer' section)

Data-acquisition configuration management database (Aeronautical and Maritime Research Laboratory, 1994-96, 1998)
Analyst, designer and lead programmer for complex database and data-acquisition configuration management system, including interfaces to other databases and to data-acquisition systems and test-control system; system design required high degree of adaptability to changing requirements based on increased scientific understanding of test problems; multiple configurations required to reference many different combinations of up to 1500 strain-gauges with different maintenance histories, without affecting real-time data-acquisition; pre-compilation of configurations required to minimise configuration downtime between test-segments; full audit-trail of configuration changes maintained; system fully implemented and in constant use in major long-term project of national strategic importance (F/A-18 aircraft); development environment/language: Paradox 5.0/8.0 for Windows.
Reference: Graeme Burnett (Senior Professional Officer 'A', AMRL): 03 9626 7630

Statistical multiplexer (Mutek MSS Ltd [GB], 1990)
Analysis, design and implementation of embedded controller for low-cost seven-to-one statistical multiplexer for serial communications, using four-packet sliding-window SDLC protocol; unit still currently in production; development environment: MSDOS integrated development system with in-circuit emulation; language: 6502 assembler.
Reference: David Graham (Director, Mutek MSS Ltd): [+44] 12216 6502

Book/magazine typesetting system (Wordsmiths [GB], 1980-86)
Analyst, designer and lead programmer for long-term development of complete 'direct typesetting' system, including embedded controller for typesetter interfaces, numerous word-processor interface drivers, and numerous one-off 'special' pre-processors for specific customer requirements (such as crossword typesetting system for London Daily Telegraph); predecessor to 'desktop publishing'; development environment: CP/M and MSDOS; language: purpose-built high-level assembler/cross-compiler for Z80 and 80x86 assembler, and 6502 assembler (for embedded controller).
Reference: Andrew Tribute (Principal Consultant, Seybold Limited): [+44] 1428 792 249